Sony Pictures Entertainment has formed a new business unit - Sony Pictures Digital Entertainment - which aims to align the studio's digital production activities with online content and game services.

Yair Landau, previously executive vice president, corporate development and strategic planning, will be president of the new unit, reporting to SPE co-president Yuki Nozoe and SPE co-president and COO Mel Harris.

The new unit will operate digital initiatives in three areas - supervising digital production and CGI of contentn for all media; tapping the studio's film and TV libraries to develop new forms of content, games and interactive programming; and spearheading SPE's drive to provide video on demand, interactive television and other forms of digital content over broadband networks.

Falling under Sony Pictures Digital Entertainment's aegis are Sony Pictures Imageworks, the CGI house responsible for Stuart Little, Sony Online Entertainment, the online games service and Columbia TriStar Interactive, a producer of online entertainment created from SPE's film and TV properties.

Significantly the new unit brings Imageworks on board from its previous home under SPE's Digital Studios Division which encompasses DVD Center, High Definition Center and Digital Post-Production facilities.